After 45 years in service, State Water (NSW) sought to upgrade the original hydraulic control system at Burrendong Dam
HIFraser was engaged to address ongoing maintenance problems, improve operability and the level of automation via the implementation of state-of-the-art electro-hydraulic control architecture.
After winning the contract at public tender, the team at HIFraser began considering a range of existing factors when approaching this project including:
• The 57m high intake tower in Burrendong Dam was the exit point for water released from the dam’s outlet works
• The Intake Tower housed the Fixed Wheel Gate (FWG) and associated hydraulic hoist and control system
• The 4.5m wide x 4.1m high FWG was the closure gate used to prevent flow through the 2.7m diameter outlet pipe, which lead to the 3m diameter main penstock
• The total mass of the moving parts in the FWG assembly and its actuating system was approximately 40 tonnes
• The FWG was lowered and raised by a hydraulic ram inside a 0.7m diameter x 5m long cylinder, with 43m of connecting rods between the ram and FWG
• The ram was controlled from a hydraulic control cabinet (containing oil storage tank, electric motor, hydraulic pump, pipes, filter, valves) situated on a service platform in the top of the Intake Tower
• There were electrical control panels (local and remote) adjacent the cabinet to control the system, and hand wheels for manual control of valves
HIFraser’s Engineers faced significant challenges in replacing the entire hydraulic control cabinet, oil storage tank, all control hardware, local control panel, remote control panel, mechanical position indicator controls and the back-up hydraulic system. The main challenge was the ability to use only 31% of the floor space on a 5.6m2, U-shaped platform, perched 54m above the base level of the Intake Tower, with very limited access.